Sunday 19 May 2019

Bono and Gavin Friday tell stories for boys

Gavin Friday.
Gavin Friday.
Members of U2 and the Virgin Prunes in one of their living rooms in the early days of the bands
Bono with Gavin Friday (left) and Guggi

Lynne Kelleher

U2 SINGER Bono has told how he turned to painting canvasses with childhood friends Gavin Friday and Guggi to escape fame when he first became a superstar.

A new documentary about his best friend Gavin Friday follows the extraordinary friendship between a group of northside Dublin boys that has endured for five decades.

Bono tells how his boyhood pals, Gavin and artist Guggi Rowan, brought him back down to earth when his fame began to explode around the world in 1983.

He said: "I remember being on the road in America and you go through that self-consciousness that fame gives you.

"People know who you are and you get a bit weird. Guggi and Gavin called me out on that and said, 'You're very boring at the moment'. I would go, 'Yeah, yeah -- you're right'.

"We started to paint together. It was also to encourage Guggi, who we knew had not found a way to make the canvasses really matter."

The bond between the boyhood friends is traced back in the RTE documentary 'Ladies And Gentlemen, Gavin Friday'.

Bono, Friday and Guggi all lived on the Cedarwood Road in Glasnevin. The three became friends at the around the age of 10.

"When I started out hanging out with them, I found kindred spirits and there was a special bond between me and Guggi and Bono", said Gavin.

They were joined by Guggi's brother, Strongman, The Edge and his brother Richard Evans, Larry Mullen, Adam Clayton and David Watson.

Gavin, who was born Fionan Hanvey, was a painfully shy child, whose charismatic personality only came alive on stage as the frontman of glam-rock band, The Virgin Prunes.

He recently celebrated his 50th birthday with a star-studded concert at New York's Carnegie Hall.

  • 'Ladies And Gentlemen, Gavin Friday' is on RTE One tonight at 10.15pm.

Irish Independent

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